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TON - June 2019, Vol 12, No 3

The June issue of The Oncology Nurse-APN/PA (TON) is filled with important news and insights for today’s oncology nurse. We begin our coverage with a profile of the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, Boston, as we speak with Kathryn E. Post, PhD, RN, ANP-BC, Clinical Oncology Nurse Practitioner, Breast Oncology Group, and Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Cancer Outcomes Research Program, who discussed her dual roles at the center, some of the challenges she faces in her profession, and what she finds exciting in the evolving field of oncology.
The Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center is an integral part of one of the most distinguished academic medical centers in the United States: Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston. The institution offers personalized innovative treatments to adults and children with cancer through >37 programs within 29 multidisciplinary disease centers plus a vast array of support and educational services in New England and the southeastern United States. It also has one of the largest hospital-based research programs in the country. Its physician investigators conduct nearly 400 clinical trials annually, and its nurses were the first in Massachusetts to achieve Magnet status from the American Nurses Credentialing Center in recognition of the excellent care they provide to patients.
Orlando, FL—Maintaining patient safety and minimizing the risks for opioid misuse and abuse in the management of cancer pain require proper assessment and new strategies for pain management that include integrative interventions, according to Judith A. Paice, PhD, RN, Director, Cancer Pain Program, Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center, Northwestern University, Chicago, IL. She discussed this topic at the 2019 National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) Conference.
Atlanta, GA—Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy has had dramatic results in hematologic malignancies, but so far, getting CAR T-cells to work in solid tumors has proved elusive. That may be about to change if promising results from a phase 1 clinical trial are confirmed by further studies. The results of this pivotal study were presented at the 2019 American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) annual meeting.
Orlando, FL—With price tags approaching $1 million or more for delivery of certain immune cell therapies, new payment models will be needed to ensure access to these therapies and to further innovations. This was a key issue addressed at a roundtable discussion at the 2019 National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) Conference. Ensuring access to chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy emerged as a top area of concern.
Atlanta, GA—The combination of the investigational MET inhibitor savolitinib plus the EGFR inhibitor osimertinib (Tagrisso) achieved encouraging responses in patients with MET-amplified, EGFR-positive non–small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and acquired, MET-driven resistance to previous therapies, with an acceptable side-effect profile. These findings represent interim results of 2 expansion cohorts of a phase 1b clinical trial presented at the 2019 American Association for Cancer Research meeting.
Atlanta, GA—Immune checkpoint inhibitors represent a tremendous advance in the treatment of several types of cancers. Although approximately 20% to 25% of patients will have durable responses with these agents, it has been challenging to find biomarkers to identify who these patients are.
Atlanta, GA—Treatment with gilteritinib (Xospata) significantly improved overall survival (OS) with less toxicity compared with chemotherapy in patients with relapsed or refractory acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and FLT3 mutation, according to the final results of ADMIRAL, a phase 3 clinical trial presented at the 2019 American Association for Cancer Research meeting.
Anaheim, CA—Although nurse navigation is a relatively new concept in healthcare, a growing number of organizations are launching navigation programs that provide patients with valuable services as they go through the many stages of their cancer journey. A panel of nurse navigators and healthcare professionals convened at the Oncology Nursing Society (ONS) 44th Annual Conference to discuss key aspects of patient navigation, and give attendees the opportunity to ask questions and learn how navigators perform their roles and collaborate with other oncology nurses and members of the cancer care team to improve patient outcomes.
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